Attacks on the Press   |   Comoros

Attacks on the Press 2000: Comoros

INSTABILITY PLAGUED THE THREE-ISLAND ISLAMIC REPUBLIC after the military government of Col. Azali Assoumani tried unsuccessfully to reintegrate the island of Anjouan, which had seceded from the federation in 1997.

There were several attacks on journalists after a January referendum in which Anjouan rejected a settlement brokered by the Organization of African Unity (OAU). Violent crackdowns on the political opposition and the media were also reported from Grand Comore and the country's third island, Moheli.
March 19, 2001 12:08 PM ET

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Attacks on the Press in 2000: Journalists in Prison

EIGHTY-ONE JOURNALISTS WERE IN PRISON AROUND THE WORLD at the end of 2000, jailed for practicing their profession. The number is down slightly from the previous year, when 87 were in jail, and represents a significant decline from 1998, when 118 journalists were imprisoned.

While jailing journalists can be an effective means of stifling bad press at home, it is very costly in terms of a country's international image. Particularly in Eastern Europe and Latin America, many countries use more subtle methods to control the press--punitive tax laws, expensive libel suits, and advertising boycotts. States that routinely jail journalists, on the other hand, are often impervious to international criticism.

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